Evans coach Kevin Kenny was encouraged by the lengthy trip that the No. 2-seed Knights' first-round AAAA state playoff opponent faced.
Instead, it was the Knights who came out flat in the first half Friday and were bounced, 83-65, by a Bainbridge team that spent five hours on a bus before reaching Evans.
Evans senior Jonathan Nicely, who scored 32 points in the final game of his high school career, said he felt some of his teammates weren't prepared.
"We should have come out with a little more fire," he said. "We had some trouble back in the locker room -- people playing around."
Bainbridge coach Rickey McCullough's team experienced a similar letdown during a home Christmas tournament. He felt the Knights might have been a little too comfortable Friday.
"I think they took us a little lightly," McCullough said. "Everybody I talked to told us how good they were."
When the first quarter ended, it was clear Bainbridge's Greyhound ride hadn't affected the team's enthusiasm. The No. 3-seed Bearcats appeared to have pumped extra oxygen into their bus.
McCullough's team never trailed, and led by 17 at the half.
Nicely put on a show during his final game, including 14 third-quarter points to briefly give the Knights hope.
But Kenny's team never drew within 12 during the second half as the Bearcats continued to hit shots.
"We heard they liked to push it," Knights point guard Trey Henderson said. "We didn't know they were going to shoot the ball like that."
Kenny said his team did a poor job of getting back on defense, even after warning his players the Bearcats would run.
The lack of transition defense hurt the Knights during the third-quarter comeback attempt, when they bested their entire first-half output, but managed to cut into the Bearcats lead by only 5.
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